Mathews hat-trick is decisive

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The Independent Online

Canterbury's men and the Ipswich ladies line up for the Premiership Finals at the National Stadium on Monday 1 May against Cannock and Hightown respectively following the second play-offs over the weekend.

In a highly exciting game, marred by the sending off of six players, Canterbury weathered early Guildford pressure to win 5-1, with David Mathews celebrating his first Great Britain call-up during the week by scoring a hat-trick.

After a string of good saves from the Guildford goalkeeper, Nick Taylor, and a goal-line stop by Ivan Steen, David Hacker took advantage of poor covering in the Guildford defence to open the scoring in the 31st minute.

Canterbury introduced Sean Kerly into the fray at the interval, and when Mathews scored the first of his goals in the 39th minute the winners never looked in doubt. Guildford's fightback was handicapped by temporary suspensions, and the Surrey club finished the game with just eight players.

The Ipswich ladies came from behind to win 2-1 away to Fyffes Leicester in a scrappy game and the home team's cause was not helped by a facial injury to Kirsty Bowden 25 minutes into the game.

Leicester, leading by an 11th minute goal from Purdy Miller at the time, conceded the equaliser on the interval to Liz Aldous, and Michelle Pleasance scored the winner at a penalty corner eight minutes from the end.